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Aurisonics Impressions, Reviews & Discussions Thread - Page 186

post #2776 of 3628
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kunlun View Post

It's you. etysmile.gif

 

Dynamic drivers are capable of a rich midrange and bright treble. Balanced armatures are capable of warm midranges as well. Consider the Sony EX-1000 as an example of a 15mm dynamic with a treble emphasis.

 

It's not as overly simple as you might be thinking.

 

In the case of the AS-2, there is no crossover, which is something to consider further.

What if theres no crossover? How will that impact the sound? And these should be coming out sometime this month, right?

post #2777 of 3628

The AS-2 has no crossover, but rather an overlap. Instead of in a crossover situation that a certain driver is meant to handle a certain range of frequency, the dynamic driver goes the full range, and the dual BA's overlap the treble region to extend it's performance over the single dynamic driver model. 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vlooienuker View Post

What if theres no crossover? How will that impact the sound? And these should be coming out sometime this month, right?

When I listen to my AS-1's I feel like the treble is not very much separated from the midrange. With the AS-2's the treble is quite distinct and separate from the midrange, allowing a broader sense of clarity and a more revealing sound signature. I think the bass gets itself a bit more kick too just because now the BA's are helping separate everything out so the bass is even cleaner than in the AS-1. 


Edited by kenman345 - 3/1/13 at 11:55am
post #2778 of 3628
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vlooienuker View Post

What if theres no crossover? How will that impact the sound? And these should be coming out sometime this month, right?
It makes your idea even less valid than it already was! Sorry...

No crossover will mean better and more natural cohesiveness in the sound. In live music everything sounds clear, but the sound of each instrument blends as the music revberates in the room you are in.

Kenman mentions a more separated sound as a positive, but crossovers often lead to artficial sounding over-separation. This can lead to a sound where each piece of music sounds separately pasted in.
post #2779 of 3628

The additional BAs definitely do not create a V-shaped signature. If anything, as what Kunlun and kenman have already shared, the additional BAs actually augment the dynamic's signature. So you still get the firm mids and deep lows of the ASG-1 / AS-1, PLUS additional treble brilliance. 

 

I find that my AS-2 definitely complement the ASG-1, rather than replace it. I have some occasions where I'll want a more relaxed signature - out comes the ASG-1. When I'm commuting on public transport, or if I want more sparkle in my music, I use the AS-2. Even for stage monitoring, the AS-2 doesn't entirely replace the ASG-1. If I'm playing bass, I tend to prefer the low-end response of the ASG-1 for monitoring, whereas I like the way my guitars come out in the AS-2, so I'll use that for playing guitar or singing.

post #2780 of 3628
Does anyone have their ASG-2's on the way yet?
post #2781 of 3628
Quote:
Originally Posted by gnarlsagan View Post

Does anyone have their ASG-2's on the way yet?

Nope. Do you? They should be out the door to many people by now since Dale said shipping started Friday for those who got in on the presale deal
post #2782 of 3628
Quote:
Originally Posted by Idsynchrono_24 View Post


Nope. Do you? They should be out the door to many people by now since Dale said shipping started Friday for those who got in on the presale deal

A bunch of ASG-2 are sitting waiting in our shop to be finished (awaiting bass valve). The valve parts are made on a 12 axis swiss lathe. We are awaiting these parts which were supposed to be here over a week ago but manufacturer will not be able to ship them till Monday to us. So they should start shipping this week. Thank you for being patient.

post #2783 of 3628
Thanks for filling us in Dale. Would you be able to possibly provide a rough ETA for the upgrade announcement or would that take place after you've shipped all existing orders?
post #2784 of 3628

Hi all -- just wanted to let you know that my 'sale day' AS-2s arrived this week. I'm having amplifier issues with my m-stage matrix and I've got an RSA Shadow coming in a few days.  I'll post impressions then. I will say that I got a very good fit. Also, I concur that the sound sig is not V-shaped. 

 

I just got an Ultra-Fi DAC, and I can tell the pairing with my AS-2s is going to be very good once I get the right amp in the mix.  

 

So far the pairing with my Vamp has just been so-so, perhaps just compared to the Ultra-Fi.

 

For anyone interested, the m-stage has a power supply hum that is noticeable with both my sets of IEMs. Apparently it's not appropriate for use with low-impedance, highly sensitive IEMs. While my AS-2s are slightly less sensitive than my V.3s, it's not enough to eliminate the hum.

 

It's clear that my V.3s are going to lose playing time.  I may have to start calling them 'Alex Smith' :)


Edited by LCMusicLover - 3/3/13 at 10:59am
post #2785 of 3628
Nice! Really looking forward to a fresh set of impressions!
post #2786 of 3628
Quote:
Originally Posted by Idsynchrono_24 View Post

Nice! Really looking forward to a fresh set of impressions!

+1!!

post #2787 of 3628

While everyone's waiting for the as2/g's...

 

has anyone tried listening to their as1s or as2s balanced out?  I'm thinking about getting an alo international and running my as2s balanced with them..

 

good idea/bad idea?

post #2788 of 3628
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisSC View Post

While everyone's waiting for the as2/g's...

 

has anyone tried listening to their as1s or as2s balanced out?  I'm thinking about getting an alo international and running my as2s balanced with them..

 

good idea/bad idea?

Can't help you -- I don't have a balanced rig.

post #2789 of 3628

Gah, sorry, I have been out of the loop on this page for a while. I forget, when are the ASG-2 upgrades coming out again?

post #2790 of 3628

Well, I finally had some quick shipping luck.  I bought the RSA Shadow on eBay on Friday.  The seller shipped on Saturday, and it arrived today.

 

So I'm listening to my AS-2s through it right now.  Since it was used, there's no burn-in wait -- it sounds phenomenal.

 

Before I give my impressions of the AS-2s, let me give a bit of my experience, musical tastes and sound preferences. If you don't care about that, jump ahead to 'AS-2 Impressions'.

 

 I've been listening to IEMs almost exclusively for the last 15 months.  Before that, mostly speakers, although I had IEMs that I used with MP3 players for quite a while before that -- mostly for when I was biking or skiing. I've gone from Sony ER-71s to iBuds, to SoundMagic E30s to Ety 4PTs to VSonic GR-07mkII to my current 1964Ears V.3s and the (Ta Da!) AS-2s.   I grew up with some really high quality (for the 60s & 70s) hifi equip -- Macintosh tube equip, big Altec Lansing speakers, Ampex tape deck.  And I've always leaned toward reasonably priced quality equipment (Advent speakers, AR turntable, NAD electronics).  

 

I listen to a lot of different music, folk, rock, bluegrass, jazz, some country, world music, classical, as well as a certain amount of electronica and ambient. Some of my favorite artists are Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, Bruce Cockburn, kd lang, Cowboy Junkies, Richard Bono, Gurrumul, the Dead, Michel Petruciani, Miles Davis, Dave Grisman, Leo Kotke, Ray LaMontagne, Vienna Teng, Lucinda Williams, Jethro Tull, Santana, the Who, Genesis, Jean Michel Jarre.  In all, there are something like 500 artists in my iTunes library, which is about 2Tb, all either 320kbs or lossless.

 

I've always sought 'accuracy' and 'detail', looking for a 'neutral' sound signature.  Of course neutral to one person ... And if you look, you'll find that the first thread I started here was all about finding my way out of my 'Ety' box.  I really liked the detail and spaciousness of the Etys, but I missed the bottom end they seemed to be lacking.  At the time, I pointed to two versions of 'Born Under a Bad Sign' (Cream & Hendrix) that just didn't work for me on the Etys.  After trying a number of other universal IEMs I ended up getting my first custom IEMs, the 1964Ears V.3s, which I like very much.  I picked them partly because they're made in Portland (just 80 miles from where I live) and I could demo a pair, partly because of good reviews here, and partly because of price.  I would summarize my impressions of them as bright, 'fun' sound signature with improved bottom end compared to the Etys.  Fairly detailed with a good wide (but not terribly deep) soundstage.  I got a very good fit with them and I've been happy with them.  Good bang for the buck.  

 

Besides my newly acquired Shadow, I have a soon-to-be returned Matrix m-Stage with an upgraded OPA-627 op amp, and a HiFiMan EF-2A for amplification.  My DACs are an Ultra-Fi DAC-41 and a Centrance DacPort LX (which I haven't listened to since I got the Ultra-Fi).

 

Now, finally...

 

AS-2 Impressions

 

These are a significant upgrade to the V.3s in every way.  Breaking the sound spectrum down into highs, mids and bass:

 

A much less 'bright' sound signature, it took me a  bit of listening to realize that the high end was much more detailed and revealing.  The example I use is that when the drummer hits the cymbal, you hear the tone, not just the 'ssss'. Another place I really notice the difference is Lucinda Williams' voice.  On the V.3s  it sounds thin, almost strident because of the emphasized top end.  It would be easy to say that this is the biggest improvement except that...

 

The mids are just so smooth/creamy/detailed.  kd lang's voice sounds completely different, kind of like an 'eargasm'.  Indeed, every female vocalist I enjoy sounds better on these headphones.  Vienna Teng's voice can be just heart-breaking live, and I've heard that same feeling (if that makes sense) on the AS-2s. Equally, Bowie's vocal on 'China Girl' takes on a new richness and immediacy, and I noticed some interesting inflections when he sings '...Marlon Brando...' and the next few lines that I'd never heard/noticed before.  Enjoying vocal performances as much as I do, it would be easy to say that this is the biggest improvement, except that ...

 

The bottom end is way better.  Powerful, yet controlled, with a lot of speed and impact, and extending much deeper.  As an aside here, let me mention that Dale includes instructions in the package that suggest that you DON'T mess with the bass port until you get to know the headphones, and then make very small changes, as they dial them in quite well before shipping.  I can attest to that -- I messed with the ports, and it took me some time to get them 'right' again.  In any case, it's funny, there's no way an IEM can deliver the physical sensation of a big speaker/sub-woofer making the floor vibrate beneath your feet.   But these IEMs deliver sound that makes your body think it ought to be feeling it.  When you're listening to 'Born Under a Bad Sign' by Hendrix, the bass guitar sounds so very real -- it's not just tone, you can really hear the string vibrate on every note, even the lowest.  On 'Zombie' by the Cranberries, the impact of the bass drum doesn't get lost in all the other instruments like it did with the V.3s, especially when the distorted (or whatever that is) guitar is playing.  And, if you like the Dead, let me just say 'Morning Dew' :)  In all, the bass is really satisfying, I suppose you could crank the ports open enough to make it bloated (in fact, my right one was there for a bit until I undid my 'adjustment') but properly adjusted, it's just great, and it's clearly the biggest improvement, except that...

 

What's really amazing about these are that not only is each part of the spectrum handled so well, but also, that the parts fit together wonderfullly.  Speaking of 'Morning Dew', it has a heavy base-line, backed by some driving deep percussion, a relatively backgroundish organ line that kind of fills, some very delicate Jerry guitar with a lot of high notes and harmonics, and Jerry's thin, plaintive vocals.  And you get all of that, presented in a beautifully balanced way that allows each part its own place. (I'm specifically thinking of 3-26-90, Knickerbocker Arena).  Surely the balance across the spectrum is the biggest improvement, except that ... (getting tired of this yet :)

 

The ability to present a lot of complex detail without it getting muddled (or muddied) really is the biggest improvement.  You can hear the whole orchestra, and you can tell the strings from the woodwinds, etc.  An interesting example is the song 'Be Here Now' by Ray LaMontagne.  There's quite a bit of the song where his voice and the guitar are in the same part of the frequency spectrum.  On the V.3s it's hard to pick the two apart, but not with these babies.  I keep hearing things I haven't heard before.  Things like a background singer or another precussion instrument I hadn't noticed.  Besides presenting more detail, the AS-2s also do a really good job of separating/localizing instruments in the sound stage.

 

As you can tell by now, I really like them :)

 

Of course it's not perfect.  One limitation is the spaciousness of the sound stage.  While I do feel that on well mixed music the location of the instruments is well-defined, there's not a lot of depth to the image.  That is, I don't get a sense of some instruments being close, and others further away, instead of just louder and quieter.  I thought that was one of the real strengths of the Etys and I miss it.  I guess you can't have everything.  I would also say that the V.3s have as good a sound stage in terms of width and 'localization', with perhaps a bit more depth.  I think if my main genre were classical I would consider this a significant limitation.  On the other hand, the sound stage seems tailor-made for jazz.

 

Amusingly, I just popped the V.3s back in after listening to the AS-2s for several hours, and they now seem very bright and bass-light. 

 

BTW, all these impressions are based on a Windows laptop with iTunes playing out USB to my Ultra-Fi/Shadow.  And right now I don't have a good interconnect between my DAC and amp.  I'm ordering one from BTG-Audio.  Also, I've replaced the stock cables with BTG-Audio Starlight cables.

 

As a bit of a disclaimer, I should mention that I just got the Ultra-Fi a couple of weeks ago, and it is a really amazing product.  I'm used to upgrades making small improvements that I frequently have to convince myself are not just placebo effects.  The Ultra Fi blew me away from the first track I listened to.  So my relative unfamiliarity with the sound of that device may be coloring my impressions of the AS-2s.  Over the next few days I'll do some more extensive A-B testing with my V.3s, and also between the Ultra-Fi and the Dacport with both IEMs, as well spending more time with my Vamp.

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